2023 Honda Pilot Review: Long-standing SUV (Images, Specs, Price, Video)
The fourth generation of Honda Pilot has been put into production at a Honda factory in Lincoln, Alabama, USA. Honda Pilot is a large-sized SUV model, classified in the same segment as the Ford Explorer, and is more upscale than the Honda CR-V, which is currently distributed in the US market. Honda Pilot is also distributed in the Middle East under the name Honda MR-V. In the first generation, this model was sold in North America, Australia, and Japan. The 2023 Honda Pilot in the US has a total of 5 versions: Sport, EX-L, TrailSport, Touring, and Elite, with prices ranging from 39,150 USD to 52,030 USD.
Honda Pilot is a mid-sized SUV model with a long-standing presence in its segment. To rescue the aging model from the increasingly fierce competition from younger rivals, Honda has made necessary upgrades so that the 2023 Pilot does not fall behind.
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|Vehicle Name:||Honda Pilot|
|Number of seats||8|
|Dimensions DxRxC (mm)||4991 x 1996 x 1793|
|Maximum power (hp)||280|
|Transmission||6-speed or 9-speed automatic|
|Drive||Front or 2 wheel drive|
|Fuel consumption in/out of town/combined||(L/100 km) 12.37/8.7/10.69|
|Ground clearance||180 mm|
2023 Honda Pilot Pricing
The 2023 Honda Pilot starts at $35,950. The rugged TrailSport starts at $48,350, while the top-of-the-line Elite kicks off at $52,030. We expect the EX-L to be the top seller. We’d recommend against the Sport for most buyers, with the savings not worth the equipment tradeoff. If you’re not sure which Pilot is right for you, take a look at a breakdown of each trim.
|2023 Honda Pilot||MSRP|
For comparison, the Subaru Ascent, Chevrolet Traverse, and Hyundai Palisade all start in the mid-$30,000 range. The Kia Telluride is priced from $35.7K, with the Toyota Highlander at $36.4K, and the Ford Explorer at around $36.8K. Slightly more upscale and with an off-road heritage, the Jeep Grand Cherokee L begins at $43K. Honda’s other 3-row vehicle, the Odyssey minivan, runs about $2,000 less than the new Pilot.
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The first impression when looking at the 2023 Honda Pilot is its tall, muscular appearance in the overall frame with dimensions of 4991 x 1996 x 1793 mm (length x width x height) respectively.
Front of the vehicle
The front part of the car is designed to be simple yet elegant, highlighting the stylish and tall demeanor of the car. The grille features Honda's signature design with a large chrome bar in the center that surrounds the company's "H" logo. On both sides of the car's front, there are sharp and precise LED headlights with small fish scale-shaped bulbs inside.
The car has an impressive LED daytime running light strip located on the outer edge, placed above the front headlight cluster instead of underneath like most other car models.
The center of the front of the car features a beautiful, glossy black trapezoidal grille. The air intake is shaped like a dragon's mouth with integrated fog lights, and the front bumper has many horizontal folds that create a wider look for the car.
Body of the car
From one angle, the 2023 Honda Pilot stands out due to its tall and sturdy body shape. The wide open window frames are a sign of the extremely spacious seating area in the vehicle. The window trims are chrome-lined in contrast to the paint color, enhancing the vehicle's robust appearance.
Overall, the body of the car has not undergone too many changes compared to the previous model. If there are any changes, they are only the 18-20 inch wheel set designed in a unique flower petal shape with a horizontally tapered wing.
Rear of the car
Unlike the soft, round front of the car, the 2023 Honda Pilot has a square, more imposing rear. The horizontally placed hook-shaped taillights are very attractive. The car's rear light strip is in the form of a long, soft LED wire that hangs down to the pair of lights.
The rear bumper is thick and the black textured plastic combines with a contrasting gray metal panel. The trunk lid features a large V-shaped groove that is elegantly engraved on the body of the car.
The interior is spacious, with high-end seats
Stepping into the car, the first impression of the interior space is the spaciousness emanating from the seats. The long wheelbase of 2819 mm and the sunroof create an airy feeling and a wide view.
The car's cockpit is designed with a modern style, yet still incorporates the practical features characteristic of Japanese cars. The dashboard surface consists of two layers of black and white plastic with a contrasting strip of glossy plastic in the middle.
The limitation of the car is the center control panel which is still confusing for users to operate.
However, the seating system in the car provides a comfortable feeling thanks to many advanced features. Specifically, the car has a 10-way power-adjustable driver's seat that remembers its position. On high-end versions, the car seats can also be heated.
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With the arrangement of 3 rows of seats and 8 seats, Japanese engineers have optimized so that any position in the car feels comfortable.
The second row of seats can be easily adjusted from 3 seats to 2 seats as desired. In some variations, the second row of seats can slide to allow the user to access the third row of seats.
All passenger seats can be adjusted electrically in 4 directions, and in higher-end versions, the height can also be adjusted to better suit the sitting posture.
The luggage space on the Honda car is very spacious, even though most of the space is concentrated for the seats. Specifically, the standard capacity achieved is 400 liters, when folding seats 3 and 2, the figures will increase to 1300 liters and 2370 liters, respectively.
The car is also equipped with abundant and modern new technologies
The cooling capacity of the 2023 Honda Pilot has received high praise from customers. Specifically, the car uses automatic air conditioning with an air filter feature that helps keep the cabin always ventilated and clean. The second-row seats have air vents that spread cool air.
In addition, this Honda car is equipped with a range of other useful features and technologies, such as:
- A 5-8 inch touchscreen display
- Support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
- Power tailgate
- Navigation system
- Rear entertainment system
- 560-watt sound system, Wi-Fi access point
Engine and performance
The 2023 Pilot has a heart of a V6 3.5-liter engine that produces a maximum power of 280 horsepower and a maximum torque of 355 Nm. It is combined with a 6-speed or 9-speed automatic transmission in higher-end variants.
The vehicle operates extremely powerful and robust with a towing capacity of 1.5 tons for the front-wheel drive type. The all-wheel drive system has a towing capacity of 2.26 tons. The Macpherson/ multi-link front/rear suspension system helps make this large vehicle stable and smoother to operate.
The ground clearance of the Honda Pilot is 180mm, which is just enough for the SUV to pass over speed bumps and climb hills.
With a large and heavy body, it's not too difficult to explain the high fuel consumption of the car. Specifically, in urban and combined driving, it has a fuel consumption rate of 12.37/8.7/10.69 liters per 100 kilometers.
Safety - Achieved impressive certifications
The 2023 Honda Pilot has received many well-known safety certifications such as the Top Safety Pick+. The NHTSA agency rates the Pilot as a 5-star vehicle thanks to the following features:
- Collision Mitigation Braking System
- Adaptive Cruise Control
- Lane Keeping Assist System
- Forward Collision Warning
- Lane Departure Warning
- Multi-Angle Rearview Camera
- Anti-Lock Braking System
- Electronic Brake Distribution
- Tire Pressure Monitoring System
- 6 airbags.
Compare with cars in the same segment
The midsize SUV segment is a highly competitive market, and the Honda Pilot 2023 is up against several other popular models like the Toyota Highlander, Mazda CX-9, and Ford Explorer. The Pilot's spacious and comfortable cabin is one of its strongest selling points, with ample room for up to eight passengers and plenty of cargo space. It also boasts easy-to-use tech features, including a standard 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, and available wireless device charging.
In terms of performance, the Honda Pilot's 3.5-liter V6 engine delivers a smooth and refined ride with 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. The engine is paired with a standard 9-speed automatic transmission, which provides smooth and responsive shifts. The Pilot's handling is confident and predictable, but some reviewers note that it may not be as sporty as some of its competitors. Fuel economy is respectable, with an EPA-estimated 20 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway for front-wheel drive models.
Safety is a top priority for families, and the Honda Pilot delivers with a suite of advanced driver-assistance features that come standard on all trims. These include forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane-keeping assist, and adaptive cruise control. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) gave the 2023 Pilot a 5-star overall safety rating, while the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) named it a Top Safety Pick+.
Compared to its rivals, the Honda Pilot's biggest drawback may be its price. It starts at around $34,000, which is higher than some of its competitors like the Toyota Highlander and Ford Explorer. However, the Pilot's strong reputation for reliability and resale value may help justify the cost in the long run.
Overall, the 2023 Honda Pilot is a well-rounded and practical midsize SUV that excels in areas like spaciousness, comfort, and safety. While it may not be the most exciting vehicle in its segment, it is a solid choice for families looking for a reliable and practical daily driver.
With timely technological and convenience improvements, the Honda Pilot is expected to make even stronger changes in terms of sales volume. As an SUV model that gathers many advantages such as practicality, premium convenience, many safety features, the Pilot is not only a luxurious family SUV but also a tough Off-road capable vehicle thanks to its powerful towing capacity.